NORTH-coast crofters are being warned to be on the lookout for a “killer beast” which is rumoured to be prowling the fields of the Far North.
It comes after the carcase of a ewe was found stripped to the bone at Swordly, near Bettyhill, in north Sutherland.
Andy McLachlan (54), of Kirtomy, said a big cat has been spotted on the border between Caithness and north Sutherland on a number of occasions. He said the potential danger the animal presents was displayed last month when the sheep was killed.
The attack is thought to have taken place around Saturday, January 28, on livestock belonging to crofter George Mackay.
His son, Liam, was looking after the croft when he went to replenish the ring feeder. During the course of his duties he found the carcase of the sheep, which was left with nothing but its hide and skeleton.
Mr McLachlan said the carcase may have been around a week old, but claimed it would have taken a large animal, not native to the Far North, to kill the sheep.
“The carcase was lying right beside the ring feeder when it was found and nobody had seen it the week before,” he told the Caithness Courier.
“The kill was far too clean to have been done by a fox as they would have ripped the fleece and pieces of skin would have been scattered when eating the sheep. …